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2020 Mizuno ST200 drivers and fairway woods arrive

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For a company that hadn’t had a PGA Tour win with a driver in well over a decade, 2019 was a big year for Mizuno drivers on the PGA Tour—and in the minds of consumers. The new ST200 drivers and fairway woods build on the success and technology breakthroughs of the ST190 series in 2020 by focusing a global team effort on a single goal: creating the best driver series on the market.

Mizuno’s tagline for the new ST200 drivers and fairway woods is “Tour Ready, World Ready” and the reasoning behind this structured line is two-part.

  • “Tour Ready”: Unlike other OEMs, there are no “tour parts” when it comes to Mizuno metal woods. With a smaller staff, the sole focus of the design team was to create a line of woods that tackle the whole spectrum of the golf demographic bell curve, from high-speed high-spin players on tour, to moderate speed golfers needing some draw bias, you’ll find them all with the ST200s.
  • “World Ready”: This speaks to a culmination of product planning and design that has been in the making for probably close to six years, if not longer. In the past, some markets, especially Japan, has had separate product lines (craft and MP) in the woods.

But there was one problem with that market and product segmentation: more designs meant engineers had to stretch their biggest resource, time, thinner. It’s not that previous releases weren’t already great, as testing proved, but it left engineers and designers asking the question “could we have done more?” From a marketing perspective, it also meant a win for a Japan-only driver, turning what could have been a global marketing win into more of a local advertisement—not an ideal scenario for a globally recognized brand like Mizuno.

Now, with the ST200s, for the first time in memory, North America, Europe, South Korea, and Japan all have one uniform line of products, designed as a single global family.

Three is the magic number: This is the last part to the ST200 story. As mentioned earlier, being able to add an additional driver model to the family allows designers to push further towards the edges of the golfer fitting bell curve and offer greater adjustability and tuning options. All while still making sure to create hugely forgiving clubs for all golfers.

Technology

So what actually makes the ST200 drivers as a whole better than the previous generation? Let’s break it all the way down to materials.

SAT2141 Beta Titanium Face: A quick Google search will show you that this material is not new to the aerospace world, but as far as golf clubs go it was mostly found in JDM (Japanese Domestic Market) drivers, especially ones meant to be Hi-COR/non-conforming, because of cost. As we all know, CT and ball speeds are limited by the rules of golf, but within those parameters, there is room for improvement around the face. SAT2041 has higher strength and rebound properties allowing Mizuno engineers to improve the multi-thickness areas behind the face for higher ball speed, and save mass to reposition around the head.

More discretionary mass: In the golf world a few grams here or there can mean a lot, and for a driver, it’s even more critical. Mizuno shaved mass all over the head to boost MOI in all three models, starting with the crown. The carbon top was already light at 10.6 grams, but by adding structural ribs, they were able to save almost 19 percent and bring that down to 8.6g. (let this be an example that a percentage statistic can sound both impressive and also feel underwhelming) but it proves that they are taking every step possible.

Mass was also saved from the standing wave at the front of the head, as well as the face, thanks to the newer material use, and in the case of the ST200, was placed in a new 11.6g weight pad in the back of the head.

Face optimization: More time spent working on products equals further refinement, and for Mizuno, that means that each loft in each model head (four total) have an internal CorTECH face designed to maximize that loft, based on players fitting profiles.

Meet the Family

2020 Mizuno ST200

The ST200 is designed for a total balance of spin control and forgiveness. The starting goal for this driver was to create the highest MOI possible without sacrificing the ability to produce lower spin. Mass saved around the head allowed for the placement of a new weight pad towards the trailing edge away from the face, to boost total MOI by 13 percent, compared to the previous ST190. Any time a product in the golf world can get double-digit improvement numbers in a performance parameter, you know they are on to something.

This higher MOI doesn’t take away from the spin performance either since the ST200, is now lower spinning that the previous lower spin ST190G.

The head comes in two standard loft configurations 9 degrees and 10.5 degrees and with the Quick Switch loft adjustability two more degrees in either direction.

2020 Mizuno ST200G

The ST200G driver is all about providing the most adjustability into a higher MOI head with very low spin properties.

From an adjustability perspective, Mizuno research found that most golfers either placed the sliding weights all the way forward or all the way back in the tracks of the ST190g. So to increase adjustability they put the weight entry point in the middle of the tracks to provide more front-back movement. The resulting design change gives the ST200G a higher MOI with the weights all the way back than last year’s ST190.

The bigger tracks, along with larger dual eight-gram weights—compared to the ST190G’s seven grams—create greater spin separation between the front and back positions—upwards of 500 RPM vs. the previous model’s 300 RPM. Lower spin, higher MOI, and faster ball speeds are everything you would want from a tour-level driver.

The ST200G only comes in a 9-degree head, but with the Quick Switch loft adjustability two more degrees.

2020 Mizuno ST200x

The ST200x is a serious contender for any golfer looking to add distance and speed back into their game. Built from head to grip to compete in the ultra-premium lightweight category, the design focus was more on a total club package than head performance alone.

The stock length is .75″ longer than the other two models at 45.75″, and with the emphasis on making each component of the club as light as possible, the total weight comes in as 272g. To give that number a comparable, the XXiO Prime is 250g (but $850), and the Titleist TS1 is 275g. This light total weight, as well as a repositioned internal and external mass, makes the ST200X draw bias to once again focus help on those looking to add some distance.

The ST200X comes in a 10.5-degree head, and with the Quick Switch loft adjustability, two more degrees in either direction you can take it from 8.5 to 12.5 degrees.

2020 Mizuno ST200 series: Shafts, prices, availability

The ST200 and 200G stock options are driven directly from the tour and feature a familiar story of high, mid, and low launch with the Mitsubishi Chemical Diamana D+Plus Series

High: Diamana D+PLUS Red 50 & 60 grams
Mid: Diamana D+PLUS Blue 60 & 70 grams
Low: Diamana D+PLUS White 60 & 70 grams

Driven by fitting, Mizuno has also added more upcharge shafts options for the first time including

  • Tensei CK Pro Orange and White 60 and 70g
  • Fujikura Ventus Blue and Black 60 and 70g
  • Graphite Design Tour AD Di6 & 7 along with XC6 & 7
  • Project X HZRDUS Smoke Yellow and Green 60 and 70 g

Price: 

  • ST200 – $399.99
  • ST200G – $499.99
  • ST200X – $399.99

The Mizuno ST200 driver’s pre-sale and fitting tools will be available starting January 21 with product on retail shelves on February 14.

Mizuno ST200 fairway woods

The story of the Mizuno ST200 fairway woods, falls in line with the drivers: by globally aligning the R&D teams, along with putting a deeper focus on total performance, we get two new woods to fit more players.

Technology

All-new MAS1C high strength steel faces: The old adage of “the shaft is the engine of the club” couldn’t be further from the truth. The face is where performance comes from in any clubhead, and Mizuno wanted to take a big step with the ST200 by completely overhauling the internal structure. By using the new face material, they were able improve on the CORTECH multi-thickness pads behind the hitting zone, which greater improved total face COR and rebound ability, especially on lower face strikes.

It’s not that previous fairway woods weren’t taken right to the limit. But outside of the center of the face, performance depreciated faster than Mizuno engineers wanted to see. You have to remember, we’re not talking about 20 yards and 5-6 MPH of ball speed here, we’re talking 2-3 total MPH that when out on the course could mean the difference between a shot that carries a bunker and ends up on the green or has you grabbing a wedge for your next shot.

Thinner, lighter, stronger carbon crown: When it works, it works. Just like with the driver, engineers managed to make the carbon crown lighter by adding structural ribs to increase rigidity. This combined with the stronger face material freed up more mass to be placed around the heads to boost MOI and center of gravity optimization.

Specs, prices, and availability

The ST200 is technically one model but the TS (Tour Spoon) 15-degree version comes with the same Quick Switch adjustability as the drivers to offer the option to change loft up or down.

The non-adjustable 3- and 5-woods come in at 15 and 18 degrees and are offered stock with two different shafts models.

Pricing is $299.99 for the adjustable TS, and $249.99 for the non-adjustable models. The ST200 fairways pre-sale and fitting tools will be available starting January 21 with product on retail shelves on February 14.

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Ryan Barath is a writer & the Digital Content Creation Lead for GolfWRX. He also hosts the "On Spec" Podcast on GolfWRX Radio discussing everything golf, including gear, technology, fitting, and course architecture. He is a club fitter & master club builder who has more than 16 years experience working with golfers of all skill levels, including PGA Tour professionals. He studied business and marketing at the Mohawk College in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and is the former Build Shop Manager & Social Media Coordinator for Modern Golf. He now works independently from his home shop and is a member of advisory panels to a select number of golf equipment manufacturers, including True Temper. You can find Ryan on Twitter and Instagram where he's always willing to chat golf, from course architecture to physics, and share his passion for club building, and wedge grinding.

3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. Jack

    Jan 10, 2020 at 2:52 pm

    buy them today and the value will be 45 dollars tomorrow …

  2. Adam

    Jan 10, 2020 at 9:31 am

    Fat ferrule

    • BJ

      Jan 10, 2020 at 9:53 pm

      Thats it…Ill hit and try anything just to not leave anything out there. But the shaft/ferrule/hosel looks chunky to me. The driver shape itself doesnt look bad. Ill test the 200G just to see

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Whats in the Bag

Lee Westwood’s winning WITB: 2020 Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship

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Driver: Ping G410 Plus (10.5 degrees at 10 degrees, neutral)
Shaft: Aldila NV 2KXV Green 65 X (tipped 1/2 inch)

3-wood: Ping G410 (14.5 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila NV 2KXV Green

Hybrid: Ping G410 (19 degrees at 19.7)
Shaft: Aldila Tour Green Hybrid 85 X (40.5 inches)

Driving iron: Ping G Crossover (2)
Shaft: Ping JZ Stiff

Irons: Ping i210 (4-UW)
Shaft: Ping JZ Stiff w/Cushin stepped 1 strong

Wedges: Ping Glide Forged (60 degrees)
Shaft: Ping JZ Stiff w/Cushin, stepped 1 strong

Putter: Ping Sigma 2 Fetch

Grips: Lamkin Crossline Full Cord 58 Rib (+2 wraps) on woods, Ping ID8 White 1/2 Cord (+2 wraps) on irons

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x

 

Additional specs on Ping.com

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Equipment

From a Fitter: Everything you need to know about wedge shafts

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This is such a dark corner of the golf industry that I truly believe needs a lot of work. Hopefully, this article can shed some light on wedge shafts for you.

I will mention some standards, explain some of my experience, and hopefully, help you make some good choices.

Linking back to the first article on aspects of a wedge that I target when fitting, I place a lot of weight on the style, bounce, grind, and loft/lie/length to get my wedge fitting started. As we move into shaft options, I look at crossing T’s and dotting I’s to ensure a player enjoys their new wedge setup.

We carry a bunch of shaft options built into different heads. As yet we do not have a consistent way to swap shafts in wedges during a session that still allows them to play at a reasonable swing weight and perform as we would like. Moving forward, I will be looking to explore this area to see if we can deliver better service and experience.

Generic standards for wedge shaft setup

  • Dynamic Gold “wedge flex”
  • Matching exactly the same shaft in your irons to your wedges
  • A slightly heavier shaft in your wedges
  • Putting an 8-iron shaft in your wedges
  • Using a wedge-specific shaft

During an iron fitting, we see a lot of variables in flight and feel, this is mainly because we use 6-irons as our demo clubs. When clients are hitting 6-iron shots, they are often looking for max carry, flight, and shot-shaping ability. This leads to hitting a lot of full swings and placing the shaft under a decent amount of load, therefore, we see some notable changes when we swap shafts. This will not show up as drastically in wedges as we are not always trying to hit the full shot. 

As we get into wedge fitting, I discuss with my clients in-depth what they use each wedge for, how far they hit them, what is the most common shot they play, what are the most common bad shots, how does the ball react on the green and what shots do they feel they need in the bag. Basically, trying to get a good overview of their game in a short period. In very few cases do players mention the ‘full shot’ lets them down? Often players say they are more comfortable hitting “softer shots” or 3/4 swings, this gives them the flight/shot that they require on a regular basis and the niche shots and consistency lets them down.

Logic here says to me, you probably do not want exactly the same shaft in the irons all the way down to the lob wedge when you are hitting soft shots 95 percent of the time. When I look at shaft specs, I am trying to build a shaft that can easily put up with the stress of a full shot and handle a softer shot without feeling blunt (for all clubs in the bag).

When I merge this process into wedges, the only wedge a “matching iron” shaft seems to be applicable (for the majority) is the gap wedge or the wedge that is predominantly a full-swing club. This is the club you hit full and maybe knock-down shots with, but you’re rarely trying to hit “flicky” spinning shots. (Those shots are why you also have a sand and/or lob wedge in the bag).

It would then make sense that if you are rarely hitting any full shots with your sand wedge or lob wedge, you probably want a softer golf shaft in those (as they are not trying to put up with your “flat out” swing), still ensuring the shaft does not feel ‘blunt’ or hard work to play around the greens with.

This is not a one size fits all theory, but I think a lot of players would have success even thinking about their wedge shaft layout in this way.

As an example: Personally, I am playing True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue 120g X100 flex iron shafts. I hit a lot of full shots with my 50 and 54, so I have chosen to play the DG 120TI X100 shaft exactly the same way in those two clubs. My 60-degree however, I rarely hit the full shot, so I feel need it a little softer in stiffness, but I need the weight to get my tempo correct and to give me more control to hit lower shots. For this club, I play the Dynamic Gold S400 Tour Issue. I chose this shaft as the profile is very close to my iron shaft but it is 13g heavier and has a slightly softer tip section, which I feel gives me a little better response.

Please see the S3 shaft profile comparison below

(I am very lucky to have the S3 shaft data, it gives me an apples-to-apples comparison of shaft profiles and weights and make wedge shaft selection a lot easier).

I also wanted to capture some data to highlight the difference wedge shafts have as simply as possible. Below is a graph showing a PGA pro’s shot grouping with a few shaft options. His 6-iron speed is about 94mph, and he has a sharp back-swing to down-swing ratio. This would put him at the quick end of people I fit. This generally means the player enjoys stiffer shafts, stiff style profiles, high swingweight, high total/shaft weight (and again not in all cases).

He tested three shafts all in the same wedge head, with the same length, loft, and lie.

Please see the grouping below

The three shafts tested were: Nippon Modus 105 Wedge specific, Dynamic Gold Wedge flex and Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400.

In no way am I trying to demonstrate the DG S400 is the best shaft for wedges, but in this group of data all that shows up is, the stiffest profile, heaviest shaft (of the test group) gave the player the tightest grouping for his 55-degree wedge shot. His explanation was that he felt the club’s position in the swing better and the strike through the turf was much more consistent, producing more consistent land zones with the DG S400. This small test shows that the wedge shaft alone has an impact even for a skilled golfer.

There are however always exceptions to theories (especially in golf!)

When I have a player using, for example, C-Taper 130 X or Dynamic Gold X100 in their irons it is tough to find a profile that matches closely that is heavier and not any stiffer. In these cases, I tend to have them play the same shaft all the way down to their LW, but I try to increase swing weight and decrease FM in the niche shot wedges (SW and LW). This can just mean adding head weight to soften the shaft a little, or sometimes soft-stepping the product to get some ‘feel’ back. 

The key take-away points

  • Think about the shots you play with your wedges most and how hard you hit them
  • Think about linking your shafts to your irons, but they do not always have to match
  • Test options and measure: grouping, turf interaction and flight consistency
  • Try and break down if the ‘”feel” of stiffness or weight help or hinder you making a consistent swing/strike
  • Don’t just settle with the shaft the wedges come with… unless they match in with your setup!

Getting all the information in one article is always tough, and I hate generalizing, so feel free to shoot me some questions—I like to try to help and also hear your experience and ideas when I can!

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Equipment

2020 Scotty Cameron Special Select putters

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Scotty Cameron has been refining and defining putters for more than 25 years at Titleist, and to celebrate 2020, he’s releasing the new Scotty Cameron Special Select putter line to showcase timeless, tour-proven designs, crafted with impeccable attention detail.

2020-scotty-cameron-select-2

Putters are unique clubs because the great styles and classic shapes never go out of style, kind of like cars. Yes, we have seen a growth in larger geometry and technology packed designs, but the classics are classics for a reason, and they will continue to live on.

2020-scotty-cameron-select-5

The inspiration for the new Special Select putters came directly from combining Scotty Cameron’s most classic shapes with tweaks driven by tour player requests. When it comes to Cameron-designed putters, it’s never going to be about reinventing the wheel, it’s about taking a proven philosophy and refining the end product to perfection. That also means using the best materials, controlling the process start to finish, and milling from a solid block of 303 stainless steel in the USA.

2020-scotty-cameron-select-7

Each model in the Special Select putter line has been completely reworked, including Cameron’s classic Newport, Newport 2 and Newport 2.5 style blades. A newly refined Del Mar joins the new Fastback 1.5, Squareback 2, Flowback 5 and Flowback 5.5 mid-mallet models.

“With Special Select, I wanted to get back to the pure-milled shapes and faces that I’ve been crafting for tour players for over two decades now. We’ve brought those designs into the modern era with new setups, necks, faces, grips and weights. Every aspect of every putter has been redone. When it all came together, it was pretty special.” – Scotty Cameron

2020-scotty-cameron-select-16

The Performance Behind Special Select

Everything Scotty Cameron and Titleist is driven by the endless pursuit of creating the most high-performance products for the best players in the world and then bringing that technology and performance to dedicated golfers. The changes made to the new Special Select line to differentiate it from previous Cameron putters of the past are all tour inspired and include

  • Soft Tri-sole Design: Special Select blade models are milled with a tour-inspired soft tri-sole design. This self-soling feature promotes the putter sitting square to the target line at address. The key to this design feature is a slightly negative bounce sole that puts the putter in the correct position time after time.
  • New Balanced Weighting: Heel and toe positioned weights in the sole of Scotty Cameron putters are not new, in fact they have been around for more than a decade now in other select models, but like the rest of the Special Select series it’s about refinement not reinvention. These customizable weights assure that each putter is properly balanced based on putter length, and the golfer’s stroke. There are stock configurations but putters can be made lighter or heavier by request through custom order.
  • More photos of the Scotty Cameron Special Select putters in the forums.
  • See what WRXers are saying about the 2020 Cameron lineup. 

2020-scotty-cameron-select-16
The blade models all come fit with new tungsten sole weights that are heavier than previous steel ones. This allows for sleeker shapes with larger sweet spots. The mid-mallet putters use a stainless steel sole weights for optimal balance and weight distribution.

  • Refined Hosel Configurations: This is the true nitty gritty, to be sure every attribute of each model is perfect before being put in the hands of the golfer. The Newport and Newport 2 putters, for example, feature a slightly shorter plumbers neck for medium toe flow, with a newly-defined socket radius (where the hosel neck meets the top line) repositioned with onset to provide better visibility of the leading edge at address, allowing for easier alignment.

Scotty Cameron Special Select Models

As mentioned, there are eight models to choose from in the new Special Select line; three blade models and five mid-mallet options with a look and toe flow for any stroke.

  • Newport, Newport 2, Newport 2.5, Del Mar, Fastback 1.5, Squareback 2, Flowback 5, and Flowback 5.5.

Final Touches

Each Scotty Cameron Special Select putter comes stock with a new grey Pistolini Plus grip with distinctive white lettering. The new Pistolini Plus maintains the shape of the original Pistolini but with a slight build-up lower hand.

The Special Select line’s un-plated stainless steel heads are bead blasted for an easy-to-maintain glare-resistant look that won’t show wear like putters with traditional plating or applied finish. The signature red cavity dots have also been given a styling upgrade with each dot milled with a recessed channel, which is then polished and hand-painted with cherry red translucent paint.

Pricing and Availability

Special Select putters will be priced at $399 and will be available Jan. 24 in North America and March 27 worldwide through Titleist authorized golf shops.

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